AMERICAN FORK — After giving birth to two sets of twins, a Utah woman had triplets, who celebrated their 50th birthday Thursday.
Janice Weinheimer of American Fork made headlines when she gave birth to the triplets on Dec. 18, 1964. Without using fertility drugs, Weinheimer had previously given birth to two sets of twins, having a total of seven children in four years.
“After the first set of twins, the doctor told me that it’d be one in 90 births before I’d have another set,” Weinheimer said. “The doctor said the likelihood of this happening was just next to impossible.”
The triplet girls were born two months prematurely and had to stay in the hospital for three weeks, Weinheimer said. The youngest of the triplets, Wendy, had underdeveloped lungs and the babies had to be incubated during their hospital stay.
“It was a miracle through a prayer that (her lungs) expanded and she didn’t die,” Weinheimer said. “They whisked (the babies) out of the delivery room and I couldn’t even touch them for three weeks. I couldn’t even go into the room with them.”
When the triplets were born, Weinheimer said her family of 10 lived in a two-bedroom, 750-square-foot house in Rose Park.
“I look at people today who complain and I say, ‘Let me tell you my story,’ ” she said. “It was a rough time, but fun. … There was such a close feeling in our family with all of these kids living together. … It was unbelievable when I think about it, what we accomplished.”
The triplets all went on to graduate from West Jordan High School and Brigham Young University. The oldest of the triplets, Jackie Fischbeck, now lives in West Valley City and has four children. Julie Hills lives in Harrisville and has six children, including her own set of twins, and Wendy Putt lives in Santaquin and has eight children.
Weinheimer said two of her grandchildren are throwing a party for the triplet’s 50th birthday in West Valley.
“Jackie’s daughter and Wendy’s daughter got together and planned all this,” she said. “They are making a birthday cake and they took this on themselves and planned it all out.”
Weinheimer has nine children and 37 living grandchildren.